If you or a loved one has ever passed a kidney stone, we don’t have to tell you how painful it is, or how helpless you feel. If it’s a first-time event, you can be frightened out of your mind wondering what could be causing this horrible pain.
Sadly, if you have one case, you are more susceptible to others. If they become recurring, you will do almost anything to prevent them.
Here are some easy ways to prevent kidney stones.
Water, water, and more water
One of the simplest ways to prevent kidney stones is to stay hydrated. Plain old water will keep the urine flowing and prevent stones from forming. Most doctors recommend 6-8 glasses a day. When in doubt about what to drink, reach for water. It has no sugar, calories or oxalate.
Maintain a consistent exercise regimen. Be careful in the hot summer months as we lose fluids when we sweat, so be sure to stay hydrated.
Cut back on sodium in your diet as it can lead to kidney stones. Pay attention to sodium content and avoid processed foods, lunch meats, canned vegetables and soups and anything with MSG.
Limit sodium consumption and instead look for foods labeled reduced sodium, low salt, and no salt. Write down the amount of sodium consumed in a day and compare it with your doctor’s recommendations.
Take Off Some Weight
Being overweight increases your risk of developing kidney stones.
Follow Your Doctor’s Orders
Be faithful to your doctor’s orders about medications and dietary recommendations to prevent another case of kidney stones.
The More Complicated Ways To Prevent Kidney Stones
We concentrated on the easy ways, but we must delve a bit into some of the more complicated, but important ways to prevent kidney stones.
There are four kinds of kidney stones each comprised of different minerals and acid salts. An important step is to find out which kind of stone you passed and ask your doctor to recommend changes to your diet. The most common type of kidney stone is a calcium oxalate stone.
Depending on the type of kidney stone, there are certain foods to eat, to avoid, and suggestions about what foods to eat together at a meal in order to best prevent another case of kidney stones. Get these instructions in writing and follow them faithfully.
Start with the easy ways to prevent your first case of kidney stones and contact your urologist for more ways to avoid future cases.